Download July @ReadNobels Wallpaper featuring #ThomasMann's The Magic Mountain

Happy July! Calendar time!

If this is the first time you're hearing about this, these calendar wallpapers are a fun monthly project I cooked up for myself and is a sneaky way of promoting the Read the Nobels Reading Challenge for 2016. I select an author who has won the Nobel Prize in Literature, a book cover, and a quote.

About Thomas Mann

Thomas Mann won the Nobel Prize in Literature in1929 "principally for his great novel, Buddenbrooks*, which has won steadily increased recognition as one of the classic works of contemporary literature"(NobelPrize.org).

This prolific German author attracted attention with this win because the Nobel is typically usually awarded for an entire body of work and not just one work. The novel Buddenbrooks,* published in 1901, is a family story inspired by Mann's own background as a north German merchant family.

He is known for his symbolic and ironic fictional works, which have insight into the artistic and intellectual psychology. He drew inspiration from German and Biblical stories, and the ideas of Goethe, Nietzsche and Schopenhauer.

I am featuring his book The Magic Mountain*, a coming of age story, because I have had it on my TBR for a while now. It has so many quotable quotes that I feel it has much wisdom to impart. Here's a synopsis which I have no doubt will whet your appetite for more Mann:

In this dizzyingly rich novel of ideas, Mann uses a sanatorium in the Swiss Alps, a community devoted exclusively to sickness, as a microcosm for Europe, which in the years before 1914 was already exhibiting the first symptoms of its own terminal irrationality. The Magic Mountain is a monumental work of erudition and irony, sexual tension and intellectual ferment, a book that pulses with life in the midst of death.

Mann's other notable works include: Death in Venice*, Joseph and His Brothers and Doctor Faustus*.

Have you read any of Mann's work? 

More links about Thomas Mann:

Go ahead and download this month's wallpaper!

Right click image, download, and set as your desktop wallpaper. Voila! #ReadNobels makes an appearance on your computer! (Note: Wallpaper for personal use only.)

* Affiliate links

Author Photo: Carl Van Vechten [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Past wallpapers:
Get some Nobel Prize winning literature in your reading lists! All it takes is one book for the entire year. Click to join the challenge RIGHT HERE!

Read the Nobels 2016

#Friday56 & #BookBeginnings: Cosmos

Our Cosmos is all that is or ever will be. Our feeblest contemplations of the Cosmos stir us -- there is a tingling in the spine, a catch in the voice, a faint sensation, as if a distant memory, of falling from a height. We all know we are approaching the greatest of mysteries. - p. 1

For Friday 56:
Things had been falling down since the beginning of time.
p. 56

Synopsis of Cosmos by Carl Sagan*: The best-selling science book ever published in the English language, COSMOS is a magnificent overview of the past, present, and future of science. Brilliant and provocative, it traces today's knowledge and scientific methods to their historical roots, blending science and philosophy in a wholly energetic and irresistible way.


Life has been happening so things haven't been as busy on the blog. I have an old, old book that everyone should read. If you're intimidated by science, I highly recommend reading Carl Sagan's accessible scientific writing. Besides, I'm pretty sure everyone has a secret fascination for the world and the universe at large. 

Have you read this classic?

#BookmarkMonday (252): @JK_Rowling 's words of wisdom

Last week's Harry Potter bookmark got a lot of love. Here's another HP-loving bookmark courtesy of Paisley Press*, with wisdom straight from J.K. Rowling. 

Do you think this quote is true?

*Affiliate link

Guiltless Reading
#BookmarkMonday is a weekly meme that started in 2009. Link up your bookmark below! Don't forget to share your love for bookmarks, whether already yours or you dream of making them yours:
  • Post about it on your blog, Twitter or Pinterest and link up below. 
  • Or share your pic with the #BookmarkMonday hashtag on Twitter so I can go check it out! 
  • If you'd like to post on the #BookmarkMonday Pinterest Board, shoot me an email at readerrabbit22 at gmail.com and I'll add you as a contributor.

Link up here!

Post your link anytime within the week!

#Friday56 & #BookBeginnings: The Panem Companion

The Hunger Games Trilogy, by Suzanne Collins, is arguably the most significant Young Adult literary work of the last few years; it has certainly been the most visible. It has been lauded for its accessibility to a wide audience, from students reading it as an assignment in schools to adult men and women reading it for its literary value -- or to see what the fuss is about.- p. v

For Friday 56:
Katniss' Odds(+3 Tesserae x5; +5 Age Entry) 20/4144 or .48%
p. 56

Synopsis of The Panem Companion - from Mellark Bakery to Mockingjays by V. Arrow:-What does Panem look like?
-How does Panem define race?
-How do Panem’s districts reflect the major themes of the trilogy?
-What allusions to our world are found in Panem names like Finnick, Johanna, Beetee, Cinna, Everdeen, and Mellark? 

Go deeper into the home of the Hunger Games with the creator of the best-known fan map of Panem. The Panem Companion gives fresh insight into Suzanne Collins’ trilogy by looking at the world of the Hunger Games and the forces that kept its citizens divided since the Dark Days. With a blend of academic insight and the true passion of a fan, V. Arrow explores how Panem could have evolved from the America we know today and uses textual clues to piece together Panem’s beliefs about class, ethnicity, culture, gender, sexuality, and more. Includes an extensive name lexicon and color-illustrated unofficial map of Panem.


I got a copy of this years ago and recently dug it up. I remember stopping and starting with this and I just couldn't get into it. I'm a huge Hunger Games fan (was one even before the first movie hit the big screen) so I thought this would be an easy sell to me. But no, it sat on the bookshelf. I only just read it ... watch out for my review of this soon! (My lips are sealed until then!)

Are you a Hunger Games fans? Is this companion book something that rocks your boat?


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© guiltless readingMaira Gall